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Children speak out on neurodiversity, LGBTQ+ issues and more – Child Talks 2023 live from the Helix

Six young people will take to the stage at the Helix in Dublin on Tuesday, November 7 for Child Talks 2023, the annual World Children’s Day event hosted by the Ombudsman for Children’s Office. Child Talks 2023 will be bigger than ever, with almost 1,000 schoolchildren from Kildare, Dublin, Wicklow, Cork, Westmeath, Mayo, Roscommon and Meath attending.

This year’s speakers range in age from 10-17 years and their chosen topics include mental health, being LGBTQ+ in Ireland, vaping, neurodiversity in schools and access to STEM subjects for girls. Presented by Mark the Science Guy and our past speaker Sophia Mulvany, there will also be live entertainment from special guests, Matilda’s Alisha Weir and singer Michael Moloney from the Late Late Toy Show. There will be a DJ set from Music Generation who we are working with again this year. The event will be live streamed at and TikTok creator India Sacha will be behind the scenes.

Children from across Ireland applied to take part in Child Talks. Over the past number of months, the Ombudsman for Children’s Office, with the support of Dublin Story Slam, have worked with the young people involved to help them tell their story.

Speaking ahead of Child Talks 2023, the Ombudsman for Children, Dr Niall Muldoon, said:

“Child Talks has been running for six years now and is going from strength to strength.  We’ve had so many brave and passionate young people tell their stories over the past few years and this year is no different.

“The young speakers will take to the stage in front of a live audience of almost 1,000 people, which is certainly no mean feat for anyone. The topics they’ll be discussing are live issues for many young people across Ireland today and our speakers deserve a lot of credit for the hard work they’ve put in to their talks over the past few months.

“Hearing from children on the issues that matter to them is an integral part of the work of our Office and we are delighted to provide this platform to young people again this year.”


Child Talks speakers

Charlotte Burke (10) from Meath will talk about the challenges faced by her neurodivergent twin sister and how we all could benefit by learning a bit more about autism and neurodiversity.

Eoin Murphy (16) from Mayo will talk about the importance of self-love and looking after your mental health.

Bee Fennell (13) from Wicklow will talk about the need for education on youth transgender issues

Ruth Cunningham (16) from Roscommon will talk about girls’ participation in STEM subjects at school

Seamus Kenny (17) from Kildare will talk about how he feels schools could do more to help students manage their mental health.

Lúcia Keane (17) from Meath will talk about vaping and how she wants young people to be aware of the potential dangers